I guess many of us thought that the Ai Group might improve with the appointment of a new chief executive. We were wrong. It has become worse, if that were possible.
Check out this reaction to the completely rational suggestion that the Queensland government withdraw the referral of its industrial relations powers to the Commonwealth, executed by the Bligh government.
Australian Industry Group chief executive Innes Willox said terminating the referral would “increase complexity and costs for employers”. “Some changes need to be made to the national IR system to improve flexibility and productivity, but these changes need to be made within the Fair Work Act,” he said. “It would be an extremely retrograde step for the Queensland government to withdraw any employers or employees from the national system.”
Actually, it makes complete sense for the Queensland government to resume (light-handed) regulation of the employment relations of unincorporated businesses. This is where the dead hand of national, highest common denominator is having an appalling impact, particularly in a regionally disparate state like Queensland.
And note to the Ai Group: only 5 per cent of businesses operate in more than one state, so where would this increase in complexity be coming from?
But with employer groups such as the Ai Group operating against the best interests of the vast majority of businesses, one really wonders.
Of course, when it comes to the Anti-Dumping Commission, the Ai Group is lending its full support to the government. Its protectionist roots are really coming to the fore these days.